Is UN Human Rights Council Fair to Sri Lanka?
Posted on July 13th, 2016

by N.S.Venkataraman Courtesy Sri Lanka Guardian

( July 2, 2016, Chennai, Sri Lanka Guardian) Presenting an oral update on Sri Lanka at the 32nd session of the U N Human Rights Council , nine months after a consensus resolution was adopted on reconciliation and accountability , the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights is reported to have made several critical remarks on the present state of affairs in Sri Lanka.

While the Commissioner for Human Rights is entitled to have his own views, it is very necessary that such an important functionary should exercise high level of caution and give due consideration to the views of Sri Lankan government as well as people from various walks of life while presenting his views.

Military presence necessary :

The Human Rights Commissioner said that he has found heavy” military presence in the northern and eastern province of Sri Lanka. There is no need for him to be critical of the presence of military particularly ,when there is no information or complaints that military has indulged in any atrocities at present.

One has to keep in mind that Sri Lanka has gone through very difficult internal strife for several years and it had to fight for it’s territorial integrity. The rebels used heavy artillery and fire arms and indulged in sabotage and killings and demanded separate state by splitting Sri Lanka. No government worth it’s salt can keep idle in such circumstances. Sri Lankan government had to fight back and this was what it did. In the process, violence have taken place and innocent people have been killed and properties have been destroyed ,for which Sri Lankan government alone was not responsible.

UN-Peacekeeping

The Human Rights Commissioner said that he has found heavy” military presence in the northern and eastern province of Sri Lanka. There is no need for him to be critical of the presence of military particularly ,when there is no information or complaints that military has indulged in any atrocities at present.

The presence of military in northern and eastern provinces of Sri Lanka is necessary and it has to be there as a precautionary measure, particularly since the separatists who are said to be operating from abroad are still demanding separate state. It is surprising that UN Human Rights Council has not seen this ground reality while criticizing the military presence.

Fair elections proof of positive steps :

Sri Lankan government has been cooperating with U N Human Rights Council and there is no reason for any doubt or misgivings about it’s positive approach . It has repeatedly said that it is anxious to restore peace and amity in northern and eastern provinces of Sri Lanka and striving it’s best to do so under the circumstances

Elections have been conducted in the provinces recently in a very peaceful and civilized manner and a popular government is in place at present, which is a positive and healthy sign.

The Human Rights Council has been quite unfair in stating that the Sri Lankan government has not moved fast enough with tangible measures to build confidence amongst the victims and minority communities. The very fact that a free and fair election has taken place and natives belonging to the northern and eastern provinces are running the government only highlight the fact that confidence of the people has been restored to a considerable extent.

Slow and steady progress :

The Human Rights Council has also criticized the Sri Lankan government for what it calls as slow progress in identification and release of land still held by the military in the two provinces. The process may be slow in the view of Human Rights Council but progress is being made steadily, keeping in view the local scenario.

The fact is that number of positive measures for rehabilitation and reconstruction have taken place in the provinces in recent months with considerable support from countries like India. Railway lines have been laid and number of housing projects have been completed. Several other projects are under planning and implementation. There is absolutely no reason to think that Sri Lankan government is uninterested in restoring progress in the area, given the magnitude and complexities of the problem that the government is confronted with.

What role for Human Rights Council ?

What is the role for Human Rights Council ? By voicing criticism and concern without recognizing the positive measures, what does it hope to achieve ? It would have been more appropriate if it had provided helpful suggestions, appealed to the international community to extend greater support to Sri Lanka in rebuilding the eastern and northern provinces and enthuse the citizens with proactive observations. On the other hand, it is creating confusion and weakening the resolve of the Sri Lankan government

One cannot but get an impression that U N Human Rights Council appear to think that it’s job would be over with critical observations. It should be conscious of it’s objectives and responsibilities ,which is to work for conducive and positive conditions and not vitiate the atmosphere by negative approach.

Sri Lanka today needs support and understanding and not criticisms which help nobody.

Why view Sri Lanka differently ?

Further, one wonders why U N Human rights Council is not so harsh in commenting about some recent violent developments in the so called developed countries ,where it is conspicuous by silence. Bombing by militarily strong advanced countries in some regions in the name of fighting militancy, has resulted in killing of several innocent people. In all such cases ,U N Human rights Council has not made critical comments.

Why is it that Sri Lanka being viewed differently ?

7 Responses to “Is UN Human Rights Council Fair to Sri Lanka?”

  1. plumblossom Says:

    In this eelam war of 26 years, over 65,000 Sinhala people and over 75,000 Muslim people were ethnically cleansed from the Northern province. I am sure they also suffered from PTSD due to this and having to live in temporary accommodation for over twenty six years. Also what about the over 360,000 Sinhala people in the East, over 560,000 Muslim people in the East and the over 1.2 million mainly Sinhala people in the North Central Province who had to live in fear being attacked by the LTTE terrorists due to they living in what were called threatened villagers. Over 6,000 mainly Sinhala civilians were massacred by the LTTE terrorists by these attacks as well as bombings. What about all the people in the entire country who had to live in fear of the LTTE terrorists suicide bombings, large scale bomb attacks in Colombo, attacks in installations like the Katunayake airport, the Colombo world trade centre, oil storage facilities to name a few? The LTTE also attacked civilians using claymore mines and IED devices set up along road roadsides which also affected civilians, especially ISnhala civilians in the East and the North Central Province. So all these civilians would have also suffered from PTSD. What about the over 35,000 of the Sri Lankan Forces, Police Force members, Civil Defence Force members who were killed by the LTTE terrorists? What about the over ten thousand Sri Lanka Forces members who are disabled? All of them too must be suffering from PTSD. So this doctor should write about all these victims too not just LTTErs and some Tamil people in the North only. Actually the entire country must be suffering from PTSD to one degree or another due to the LTTE terrorist activities and war. The doctor should also write about these victims too.

  2. plumblossom Says:

    Sri Lanka needs a strong central government in the form of the executive presidency. It is the executive presidency which is keeping the unitary state together since provincial councils have now been provided powers. Therefore if the executive presidency is abolished, the provincial councils will become more powerful and the separatist terroristic TNA will try to break away using threats the North and the East. the PR system is the fairest system which means each vote counts. It is a very democratic system. We do not need any changes to the constitution. These changes to the constitution are only suggested to bring on stealthily a federal or a separate state by falsely labelling it as ‘unitary’ to hoodwink the idiotic Sinhala Buddhists. We do not need any changes to the constitution which is what the separatist terrorists of the TNA, US, UK, EU, Norway, Sweden and Canada wants to dismember this country. Also it is the executive presidential system which can easily carry out programmes to develop the country since otherwise there will be endless wranglings within the cabinet and in parliament about what path to follow for development to happen. A well meaning executive president can easily implement a reasonable and suitable programme to take the country forward. Another main reason to keep the executive presidency as it is to counter the separatist threat since a strong executive president can stop any treacherous activities which goes against the independence, freedom, sovereignty, unitary status etc. of the country since the executive president is elected directly by the people’s vote and is answerable to all the people of the country as a result. So for all these reasons, there is no need whatsoever to change the constitution. However the provincial councils should not be given any more powers, there should not be any merger between provinces, ideally the 13th amendment to the constitution should be abolished and there should be a strong central government if Sri Lanka is to move forward as a country and since it is a small country.

  3. plumblossom Says:

    Not only this, the treacherous Ranil, Sirisena, CBK, Mangala, idiotic UNPers, those INGOs working for thousands of dollars and even the JVP are trying to dismember the country via constitutional changes. We patriotic Sri Lankans should demand a strong central government, no more powers to provincial councils, no merger between provinces, ideally abolition of the 13th amendment to the constitution and absolute safeguarding of the sovereignty of the country.

    The army did not commit any war crimes. it is the LTTE who committed war crimes. However, it is high time that Sri Lanka rejected the US imperialists UNHRC resolution and state at the UNHRC to leave Sri Lanka alone to get on with reconciliation as Sri Lanka sees fit.

    Actually Sri Lanka today being accused of committing war crimes by the US, UK, EU, Norway, Sweden, Canada, India etc. is very similar to the way Saddam Hussein and Iraq was accused of possessing non existent WMDs. Although Iraq did everything possible to show the US, UK, EU, Norway, Sweden, Canada etc. that it did not possess WMD it was bombed anyway, regime change brought about since Iraq has massive amounts of oil which the US, UK, EU, Norway, Sweden, Canada companies wanted to extract at cheap rates by bringing on a puppet regime. A similar scenario is unfolding in Sri Lanka since Sri Lanka is located at a strategic location, the US wanting to establish a naval/air base at Trincomalee, the US wanting to establish further US army, navy, air force bases in the island, mineral resources, marine resources, control of the Indian ocean sea routes etc. For this, the separatist, terroristic Tamils who are subservient to the US are who the US is favouring to help them with this task. This is why the US favours eelam. All patriotic Sri Lankans should therefore tell the government to withdraw from carrying out the US resolution and to tell the US to leave Sri Lanka alone.

  4. plumblossom Says:

    Sri Lanka should tell the US that Sri Lanka cannot abide by the UNHRC resolution. The Sri Lankan Army did not commit any war crimes. It is the LTTE terrorists who committed war crimes throughout 26 years of war. No country with an ounce of self respect will place their army in harms way to be tried by a court domestic or hybrid of war crimes the army did not commit in anyway. If individual soldiers committed any crimes, a complaint can be placed in a court of law in Sri Lanka. Why is there a need for special judicial procedures? This government is a puppet of the US, EU, UK, Norway, Sweden, Canada and India and is so subservient to US interests that it is ready to try its own armed forces for crimes that the armed forces did not commit. All the while, the LTTE terrorists who committed war crimes are being shown as totally innocent. Using the ploy of wanting a new constitution which almost all Sri Lankans don’t want, this treacherous government is trying to create a separate state in the guise of a federal state as the TNA separatist terrorists and the US, EU, UK, Norway, Sweden, Canada and India wants. Sri Lanka should tell the US that Sri Lanka cannot abide by the UNHRC resolution. The worst that the US, UK, EU, Sweden, Norway and India can do is impose sanctions on Sri Lanka. So what? Sri Lanka can trade with all the countries of Asia and the rest of the world even if the US, UK, EU, Norway, Sweden and India imposes sanctions. Sri Lanka can grow rice, we have jack fruit, bananas, bread fruit and plenty of water too. So we will not starve just because the US, UK, EU, Sweden, Norway and India imposes sanctions. Also since we can trade with the powerful economies of Asia which includes the Middle East, South East Asia, South Asia, the Far East and Central Asia as well as the rest of the world, actually, we may be OK economically too despite any sanctions imposed by the US, EU, UK, Norway, Sweden, Canada and India. However by avoiding implementing the unjust UNHRC resolution, Sri Lanka will safeguard its independence and freedom which is the most important thing for the next thousands of years as we have safeguarded our independence and freedom for at least the last 2600 years and avoid the creation of a separate state or eelam in the guise of a federal state. So Sri Lanka must very urgently tell the US that we will not abide by the unjust UNHRC resolution but carry out our own domestic process of reconciliation as we see fit. Let the imperialist US impose sanctions. Nothing much will happen to our economy since we can trade with the powerful economies of Asia and the rest of the world instead but Sri Lanka would have preserved its independence and freedom for the next thousands of years and avoid the partition of the country and the creation of a separate state which will be Sri Lanka’s end.

  5. Ancient Sinhalaya Says:

    No.
    MR stopped the carving out a christian country in Sri Lanka by catholic tigers of tamil drealam.
    Therefore he has to be punished. What about the catholic tigers of tamil drealam’s victims? 100,000+.
    But in christian run UNHCR’s monki boon doesn’t utter a word about them since the victims were
    mainly Sinhalese.

    Also just look at the countries after MR’s blood. Uk, ds (formerly known as united states,
    now divided states who preach human rights to others while killing their own black people at the drop
    of a hat), norway, italy, france, germany, argentina, italy, brasil etc. etc. All staunchly catholic countries.
    Even archbishop two three of south africa shouting from the roof tops. Countries against MR’s blood are
    all muslim countries. See the connection? By the way we wonder monki boon heard about toni blair,
    former pm of uk was on the news recently? Sure he never heard the name!

    http://ltte-christian-ties.blogspot.com/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cV6_o9txURc

    http://www.lankaweb.com/news/items/2015/08/05/christianizing-of-sri-lanka-unps-betrayal-of-buddhism/

    http://www.lankaweb.com/news/items/2016/05/27/ranil-wickremasinghes-new-unp-3/

  6. NAK Says:

    Thank you Mr.Venkataraman for seeing things as it is, rather than the usual Diaspora coloured glass.

    Yes, why does the UNHRC views Sri Lanka the way they do? The answer Mr. Venkat sadly is partly India and mainly the USA.
    What makes you think they don’t see what you see? of course they see, they know, but pretend not to as they have an agenda to keep.
    All this Geneva facade is a cooked up soup to put pressure on SL to give in to the separatist demands.

    The US wants a military base in the east of Sri Lanka and India supports it. They have to divide Sri Lanka to get it as Sri Lanka will never allow a US base on its soil but an Eealm definitely will.

    By the way Sri Lankan army is stationed all over Sri Lanka as is in India or any other country.

  7. Sooriarachi Says:

    Western world is a Capitalist society, where money rules. The Tamil separatists have amassed money legally and illegally and they know how to influence weak officials, politicians, journalists etc. and make them dance to their tune. The new UNHRC commissioner too, so far, has followed in the foot steps of the previous commissioners and have not been impartial or constructive in relation to Sri Lankan issues. He too seems to be quite happy to play the tune requested by the Tamil separatists. When will this circus stop?

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